Kidnappers of six students of Model Secondary School, Igbonla, Epe in Lagos State have threatened to strike again if the federal government does not include them among the beneficiaries of the Amnesty Programme.
The kidnappers, who claimed to be militants, under the auspices of Niger Delta Forest Army, said the kidnap case of the six students was their last campaign of peace as their imminent strike will be deadlier if their demands were not met.
Speaking through its Public Relations Officer, Bossman Konowei, in a statement made available to newsmen in Ondo, they said they decided to release the students because they wanted to enjoy the amnesty from the federal government.
The students kidnapped from Lagos State were released to the Deputy Governor of Ondo State, Agboola Ajayi, in a creek between Ajapa in Ese-Odo local government and Ugbonla in Ilaje local government of the state after 65 days.
According to Konowei, only members of Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) are benefiting from the present amnesty programme as other militants are excluded.
“We wish to bring to the notice of all Nigerians that the recent release of the six Igbonla College students who were in our custody was done for specific reasons. It is out of respect for our state, especially the Deputy Governor, Ajayi, and his Delta State counterpart, Mr. Kingsley Otuaro.“For years, the then PDP government’s Amnesty programme has been handled as a baby for PDP boys to the exclusion of others, especially in Ondo State.“None of our pleas was heeded by the authorities. That is the reason we embarked on our Lagos/Ogun violent campaigns to attract attention.“We had done this for years and we are satisfied that we have made our points known.“The Igbonla College raid was an operation we carried out as a sign of our last violent campaigns if government takes the issue of amnesty for us with all seriousness.“Is it not laughable that after dropping our guns for the government, only few PDP youths benefitted to our exclusion?“We hope the federal government will not allow our period of grace to get to another level of Ondo crisis.“This is the last chance for permanent peace. We shall return deadlier if nothing is done,” Konowei said.
The militants also denied reports that some of them were killed in the effort to release the students, saying the police were only trying to take the glory for nothing.“We want to use this medium to state that none of our men was killed in the build up to the release of the six students as claimed by the Lagos State Commissioner of Police and the government of Lagos State.
“We only laugh at them listening to their claims and attempt to take glory for something they knew nothing about.
“We released the students to Ondo State deputy governor because we knew he will pursue amnesty for us.”